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Family Safety Hub – Health Justice Partnership

Responsible government

  • Australian Capital Territory

Fourth Action Plan actions

  • Respect, listen and respond to the diverse lived experience and knowledge of women and their children affected by violence
    • 10 Implement community-led and tailored initiatives to address the unique experiences and needs of communities affected by multiple forms of discrimination or inequality.
    • 11 Deliver policies and services to address the disproportionate impact of violence on particular groups.

What have we achieved so far?

In 2019 the Family Safety Hub delivered a pilot to address early intervention for pregnant women and new parents experiencing or at risk of domestic and family violence.

A six-month pilot three heath justice partnership services ran from January to June 2019. The service tested embedding a lawyer into health care sites across Canberra to provide free access to legal information. Having lawyers embedded in health settings means women and their families can access free and confidential legal advice, practical assistance and targeted support. Sometimes people want to understand if they are experiencing violence, or what their legal rights and responsibilities are, before acting.

What is next?

A review of the pilot is currently under way. The review is looking at two questions that the pilot sought to address:

  • What does it take to implement a successful Health Justice Partnership in the ACT?
  • Should the service be continued or scaled?

The ACT Government committed $300,000 over 2019–2020 to continue delivering this new legal service and to provide time to evaluate the program.

What difference will we make?

Early indications from the pilot demonstrate that the service is reaching members of the community who would have otherwise not received help. Legal support for those affected by domestic and family violence is typically provided during or after crisis. The partnership provides earlier intervention support that is aiming to prevent women from reaching crisis.

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